The imperative at hand: Ally with positivity

Super Bowl LVII will mark the end of COVID-era marketing. It’s time now for positivity.
17 January 2023
Super Bowl
J Walker Smith
Walker Smith

Knowledge Lead, North America

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Nothing since 2020 has been easy for marketers. Or consumers. The fright of contagion and quarantines was followed quickly by anxiety over spiking prices and worry about a ground war in Europe. Everyday business operations have been overwhelmed, and a mental health crisis has mushroomed.

But amidst worry and concern consumers have returned in droves to travel, entertainment and experiences. Consumers have proven resilient, despite feeling embattled, to a degree wholly unanticipated by marketers. Kantar’s most recent tracking of attitudes in U.S. MONITOR shows that seven in ten consumers feel confident about their financial situations. More than six in ten (just shy of the highest level tracked in 2019) believe they could easily find a new job if worse came to worse.

What consumers want most from brands is an ally in their striving to get past the uncertainty and angst of the past three years. Super Bowl LVII is the perfect opportunity to turn the corner on what brands say and do. The Super Bowl is more than a game. It is a universal cultural moment that touches everyone and all brands. The game on February 12, 2023, will be the first one since COVID began that is not overhung by mounting tensions. This is the moment for brands to align themselves with the optimism and positivity sought by consumers.

Consumers are looking for encouragement, even inspiration, not more dispirited reckoning with adversity and volatility. Kantar’s Global Issues Barometer tracks attitudes in 19 countries worldwide, including the U.S. where over half prefer a positive perspective from brands. Simply put, no more doom and gloom. Consumers are ready to look ahead. Macro realities won’t change overnight, but consumers have changed already. The burning imperative is for brands to deliver an uplifting message.

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